lorraine massey silver hair a handbook

One of the busiest areas of our CurlTalk forum these days is the Going Gray section.

CurlTalker Newtocurls has trouble finding the right products for her gray hair, "I'm 49, more grey but not all, and can't seem to find the right, products or cut. I began experimenting with different hair products many, many years ago.

Teachermrw posed the question "Are you Embracing or Running Away from Your Gray Hair?" And Jeepy's Grey Hair Progress thread has nearly 10K views.

"Grey hair doesn't make anyone look older. It's just the media telling us so. Grey is just another color," says JeepCurlyGurl.

As the time between salon visits for root touch ups has steadily decreased for me, I have toyed with the idea of letting my hair go gray. Even if I color my hair at home, it is a tedious task. But what's the alternative?

Lorraine Massey, who brought us the bestselling Curly Girl: The Handbook, which changed the lives of millions of curly girls and created a new lexicon of 'pooing and cones, is providing a guide for those who want to "let their natural light shine." With Silver Hair: A Handbook, Massey has created another empowering how-to book that is sure to become a bible for women who want to go gray.

Written by Lorraine Massey with Michele Bender, the book addresses the many ways to go silver, along with an overview of the science behind the transformative process, including:

  • How to grow out the dye naturally, without any chemical assistance

  • Using highlights, lowlights, and toners to blend color

  • When to get a little help from silver color

  • The best cuts to help the process along

  • Tips on revitalizing wardrobe and makeup routines

  • DIY recipes, like Blue Dew Toning Hair Bath and "Berry" Effective Hair tonic.

silver hair a handbook by lorraine massey

Silver Hair: A Handbook by Lorraine Massey and Michele Bender (Workman). Copyright © 2018. Photographs by Jeremy Saladyga.

The book grew out of Massey's own "uncoloring journey," which began when she was waiting to meet a friend at an upscale NY salon.

"I kept seeing women emerge from the salon," she writes. "It was like a conveyer belt of women, who all seemed to be around the same age, leaving with the same bleached-blonde highlights and blowfried, straight hairstyle. 'Why do they all want to look alike in both texture and color?' I wondered. . What the heck was my real color, anyway? What had I been hiding all these years?" - Excerpted from Silver Hair: A Handbook by Lorraine Massey and Michele Bender (Workman). Copyright © 2018. Photographs by Jeremy Saladyga.

A staggering 75% of women admit to dyeing their hair. Over four decades, a woman may shell out an estimated $70,000 on hair color in Los Angeles – the equivalent of a down payment on a home!

Massey addresses the difference between "letting yourself go" and "letting go." And how to tone out the critics. One woman had to deal with a husband who told her "When we met, I signed up for a blonde" when she told him she wanted to go gray.

trae bodge from the curl revolution book

Trae Bodge photographed by Karston Tannis from The Curl Revolution: Inspiring Stories and Practical Advice from the NaturallyCurly Community

I love the real stories sprinkled throughout the book, because no two women will have an identical experience when they go gray.

They include Jen, a 53-year-old personal trainer and yoga instructor. "It's such a relief to not be going to the salon, because the second I left, I felt like the clock was ticking until I'd be back again." For her, the hardest part of going silver was the line of demarcation.

Ashley, 30 discovered her first gray hair at 14, and began to color it. After six years, she got tired of coloring and decided to go gray naturally. "My silver makes me feel full and happy." She regularly receives compliments on her hair.

Janine, 44, had been coloring her hair since her early 20s. But with two young kids, she no longer had time for it. "I get stopped on the street by a lot of people asking questions about my hair and wanting to take pictures. I was even asked to audition for a Dove hair care ad."

The book also addresses "Silver Wear," adapting your makeup and clothing to match your silver locks. Tips include "skip khaki and tan," and "Change the way you think about neutrals."

I want to give a big shout out to Lorraine, for providing a much-needed inspiration to so many women, including myself. I'm not quite ready, but I feel so much better knowing that someone has provided me with all the tools and options I'll need when I do decide to embark on my own uncoloring journey.